Olympic Lifting For MMA, BJJ, and Combat Sports

Olympic Lifting For MMA, BJJ, and Combat Sports

With the advent of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), combat sports have risen to a new level and nowadays, it is one of the most watched sporting events on television. Since it draws an estimated $1 Billion (2023) each year, being the best at it, is something everyone wants to be. But, how does weightlifting factor into this highly competitive sport?

A solid weightlifting routine, like Torokhtiy’s program, is often one of the best ways to go and ensure that you have the perfect balance between explosive exercises and strength-based training. It will put you at an advantage inside the octagon or combat sports arena when you can efficiently outmuscle your opponent in those ground takedown moments. 

Alas, Olympic lifting can be very beneficial to many sports athletes in the world of combat sports. Today, we explore the basics of such workouts and find out whether or not it can yield the benefits that you might need and perhaps, even improve the performance in the ring. Now, you will not only talk a big game, but you can also look big to back it up.

Should A Combat Sports Athlete Invest In Weightlifting?

Obviously, the best way to improve your skills inside the ring will be to use a professional coach in the specific discipline you are training. Kickboxers should have a specialist kickboxing coach, whereas wrestlers need to understand the fundamentals of wrestling or Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu to become masters at it.

However, weight training can be seen as a supplemental form of training that can boost these base skills of any athlete. Should you only choose to focus on one specific discipline of your training, you will become faster and more efficient at doing so. However, the addition of weightlifting will make it that much more efficient when you master it.

Weightlifting can yield a ton of benefits that we should explore:


The first benefit you will notice is that your strength will increase exponentially. The more time you spend lifting weights, the heavier weights you will eventually find yourself lifting. When this is combined with a solid-strength diet, you will also see more efficient gains.

To put this into perspective, those finding themselves engaging in a math of strength or locking up with their opponents, can more easily flip the script and take control of the encounter. The recent Dricus Du Plessis fight proved that being stronger and having can sway the judges to favor you when it comes down to the wire.

Muscle Resilience

Let’s say that your opponent is gaining the upper hand and they are attacking you. The natural idea for a fighter is to block and resist the onslaught. If you invest time in the gym and follow a lifting routine, you ought to have more strength, which means you can stand more resolute. Your muscles will take the brunt of the impact and this will help with your overall resilience.

One way to think of this is that when you see someone packed with muscles, you automatically know that it will not be easy to take them to the ground. You also know that once you punch them, they might not even feel it. 

Harder-Hitting Punches

Another vital benefit is the fact that when you hit your opponent, you will now have more power and force behind each punch. Each punch or form of attack that you launch will be far more impactful and this can certainly turn the tide of the fight in your favor.

Once again, you can think of a strong man hitting you in the face. Whilst they might be slower, the power behind those punches will do far more damage than that of a surfer. You should also keep in mind that UFC judges do score rounds based on the level of damage that has been inflicted.

Reduced Chances For Injuries

Another crucial benefit is that you will be more resilient to injuries. Thinks like ligaments and tendons are fragile when they are exposed to opponents. However, packing a good amount of muscle around them will give them that added boost, which tends to make them stronger. Ultimately, you will find yourself having fewer injuries.

The Downside To All This

To be honest, there is only one downside that many people will keep reminding you about. However, this can also be remedied by training smarter and more efficiently. Many people believe that the more muscle you have, the slower you will be when fighting. Whilst this is true for the most part, it is not the complete story.

When a person manages to balance their workout routine with some weight lifting, their body will automatically start to adapt to the excess muscle. Either, you will shed some of it to reach that perfect sweet spot, or you will just adapt and your body will make it work for you.

You should not add other performance-enhancing drugs to do it though as this could be counterintuitive, not to mention bad for your health. 

Ultimately, having a good trainer and following a solid weightlifting routine should yield plenty of benefits for the trainer. You will notice just how good you become and the next time you step up for a fight, you might be in the driving seat from the onset.

One additional thing to keep in mind is your stamina. Yes, it is true that the heavier you become, the more stamina your body will require to perform. By focusing more on your fitness routine, you will counteract this and you will bring your body into balance. Always remember that when you train every muscle efficiently, your body will naturally find the perfect balance it can sustain when fighting.


Adding some Olympic lifts to your combat sports routine can definitely give you the edge in many fights. Not only will you become a stronger fighter, but every part of your training will be more efficient. Let us know in the comments if you think that it could help you.